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In recent transfer windows, Liverpool have been linked with many goalkeepers including Barcelona’s Marc-André Ter Stegen. Much of the speculation was prompted by the inconsistent performances and dodgy distribution skills of current first-choice stopper Simon Mignolet.
However, despite the criticism, former Reds boss Brendan Rodgers stuck by the Belgian.
Klopp keen on replacement keeper
With Jurgen Klopp now at the Anfield helm, Mignolet’s future is once again being discussed. Reports in the Spanish media have suggested that Klopp has already decided to replace 27-year-old, with the German keeper his preferred target.
The former Borussia Dortmund Coach has been concerned by Liverpool’s approach to defending set pieces and wants a keeper that he and his defenders can trust in and around the six-yard box.
Frustrated by lack of opportunities
Barcelona signed Ter Stegen to be their future number one and at 23-years-of-age he is still very young in goalkeeping terms. But with limited first team chances behind Claudio Bravo, the former Borussia Monchengladbach keeper is growing restless.
In the current set-up, Ter Stegen is used for Champions League and cup games while Claudio Bravo is preferred in the league. Both keepers have indicated that they are uncomfortable with this situation.
In an attempt to force his way into the coach’s plans for the current season, the young German gave up part of his summer holiday and returned to training 11 days early. Despite his efforts, Claudio Bravo was once again handed the starting role in the league.
Ter Stegen’s frustration was enhanced further when Bravo walked straight back into the starting XI after a three-week spell out with injury.
Sizeable investment required
The sticking point for Liverpool could be the release clause. Early reports from Sport newspaper in Spain have reported a release clause of €80m but other sources have suggested that the release clause is actually closer to €60m, meaning Liverpool would have to stump up around £40m for his services. At that price, Barcelona would make a profit of more than €45m.
Klopp will have to persuade the club owners that an investment of that size represents good value over the long term.
The German connection
Klopp knows the keeper well from his time in Germany and could be the right man to convince him to make the switch. The chance to work with the enigmatic Coach and the offer of first-team football could be enough to lure the youngster to England.
The question remains whether Liverpool’s hierarchy are prepared to break the bank in order for Klopp to get his man.
Written by Neil Morris
Follow Neil on Twitter @nmorris01
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